The Kentish Ramble

Source: Keith Uttley; published in English Dance & Song, March 1961, Vol. XXIV. No. 4
Formation: Square

A1 Head Couples Promenade all the way WHILE Sides Go Forward & Back x2
A2 Side Couples Promenade all the way WHILE Heads Go Forward & Back x2
B1 Heads: Full Hey - start by the Ladies stepping into the middle and facing their Partners
B2 Sides: The same
C1 Heads North Country Ladies' Chain x2
C2 Sides North Country Ladies' Chain x2
D1 Repeat the Heys as in B1 & B2 but do them simultaneously
OR Four Ladies Chain Half Way x2
D2 All Couples: Promenade Around the Set

64 bars - AABBAABB.

The rant step is to be used throughout. In most cases this will be a travelling rant step, basically 1-2-3-hop, though the hop can be suppressed or omitted for those wishing to conserve their energy (or their knees or ankles!).

North Country Ladies' Chain: Important: The man does NOT turn at all. Ladies pull by right and offer left to the man. The man steps to the right and raises his left hand; the lady backs under it to end facing the same way as the man, slightly behind him, on his left. The man lowers his left hand and steps to his left, passing the lady's left hand from his left hand to his right hand behind his back. As he does this the lady steps to her right and forward to stand beside him. They end up as a couple with the man on the left, lady on the right.

In the simultaneous Heys in D1, the four people arriving at the middle together do part of a small single file circle to avoid crashing. It may be easier to dance it with hands: Partner Pull By Right; Opposite Pull by Left (with the four left hands making a momentary Star Left in the middle).

The Heys require the ladies to step into the middle before everyone can start, but it also says "as in Soldier's Joy". In that dance everyone gets into position at the end of the previous figure. It should be fairly easy to finish A2 by the Side Men sweeping the Ladies in at the end of the Promenade, and the Head Ladies turning as they fall back, so that the Hey can start at the beginning of B1. Or you could start the Heys by the Ladies passing right shoulders.

Original page from English Dance & Song, March 1961

The Kentish Ramble

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